Wednesday, January 22

Winter Shart Tarck 2020: Race Uno'ed

I really love racing at one o'clock in the afternoon.  Compared to all these wake up before the butt crack of dawn endurance races, it's a blessing.  Open my eyes whenever, enjoy my coffee, eat an irresponsible breakfast... roll over to the course when I feel like it.

Watch some racing... start getting my shit together.  Half disrobe to put on my heart rate strap.

Go to "warm up" by riding up and down the road a couple times... shit.  My Wahoo is saying n/a in the heart rate field.  WTF?

Disrobe (again), look down at the expensive white puck strapped to my chest... the bleep bloop lights aren't bleep blooping.  Dammit.  My first chance at "racing" winter shart tarck with a tachometer, and I got a dead battery.  Roll around the pits looking for friendlies that might have brought a spare battery...

This is one of the hells I never wanted a part of being.  Electronics and bike cycling.

Take off the worthless strap, thankful that if I was really "racing" my fellow "olds," I'd be super pissed instead of just sad disappoint.  Feeling warm, I take off my tiny hat, base layer... and my left knee warmer.

Line up at the front row of single speeders... next to some folks who look like "athletes."  Dammit.  It looks like there's almost twenty of us out here.  At least mid-pack anonymity is looking achievable. 

Go.  I think I must be trying too hard.  Only Chase and Jason are ahead of me on the opening straightaway.

"Jason, what are we doing?!!?"

"I don't know!"

Go into the woods in mebbe fourth place.  Hold my own through lap one.  Out of the woods and Nick passes me... bumping elbows and then he tagged me lightly in the stomach with an out-stretched arm.  I like racing with friends.  Ahead of me, he closes the gap to FM teammate Colin, and they have a slight tangle up.  This will be a good day.  I gun my 32 X 16 on the pavement and get back past them both.  Go into lap two thinking mebbe this is gonna go okay...

Feeling like a super hero into the first carpet-covered turn on the course... and totally Tokyo drift across the gravel strewn inside of the corner, still clipped in, elbow, knee, and gloved hand dragging across the ground.  Ouch.  Riders come blasting by my Days of Thunder smoke and debris all scattered across the trail.  Dammit.

Hop back on the bike, look down at my knee... it's covered in mud and crush 'n run grit.  Hmmm...

photo cred: Supercycling
Since I was running the new tires I said I wasn't gonna run, I figured why not wear the new shoes I said I wouldn't wear.

Some of my spunk is gone.  I don't feel 100% about pushing the corners as hard.  Nick and I end up back together.  He tells me that he doesn't care what place he comes in.  I concur.  We back and forth quite a bit.  I look down and I can see the blood coming through the crust on my knee.  Dammit.

Nick catches up to me...

"I had to shotgun a beer on the last lap..."

So, I guess he's beating me on the virtual scoreboard now.

We end up thoughtlessly slowing down to a conversational pace, chatting about this and that... forgetting we were supposed to be in a hurry.

FM teammate Tod (racing 50+) hears our banter and reminds us that we're supposed to be "racing."


On the last couple laps, we end up in the hell of lapped traffic and also the fast "olds" catching up on us, despite our head start.  Things get slightly argy-bargy, but I don't think anyone's feelings get hurt.  Nick falls off my wheel in the melee of the final lap, but closes down on me on the garvel... so I gun a sprint that he never wanted and neither did I for a pointless 8th place outta 20 total.

Spoke was well represented.  Pretty sure those are moobs tho.

So glad I wasn't wearing my left knee warmer.  I just bought them a month ago, and I'd rather loose skin than a fresh pair of knee happy makers.

Oddly enough, assuming I put forth the same effort, I woulda been 7th in the "olds."


I wouldn't have been swapping recipes with Nick in the woods, but I woulda been mentally frustrated about the lack of a heart rate monitor, and also making stupid efforts to close gaps on people with gears...

Regardless, twas a fun day in the sun with frands, and I look forward to next week...

To some degree.

1 comment:

KC said...

Wahoo makes a new strap, Tickr Fit that's rechargeable & you wear on your arm (upper or lower, doesn't matter). No disrobing to put it on & no dead batteries to replace (but one more thing to charge).